The New Student's Reference Work/Parnell, Charles Stewart
Par′nell, Charles Stewart, an Irish statesman, was born on June 28, 1846, at Avondale, Wicklow County, educated at Yeovil and Cambridge, and in 1874 became high sheriff of his county. In 1875 he entered Parliament for County Meath as a home-ruler, and in 1877-8 became notable as an obstructionist. In 1879 he was elected president of the Irish National Land League, and in 1880 visited the United States, making speeches in behalf of the movement and collecting $350,000 in its aid. Parnell's opposition to the coercion bill caused him to be ejected from the house of commons, and the passage of the land bill almost deprived him of power. On Oct. 13, 1881, Gladstone put him in Kilmainham jail, where he remained until released through the aid of Captain O'Shea, May 2, 1882. After the Land League was declared illegal, the national league arose from its disruption, and Parnell was elected president and began to manœuvre to throw his parliamentary strength to the conservative side. Failing in this, he carried 86 votes to the liberals. To a great extent Gladstone's views on home-rule had changed, and this brought Parnell politically close to him, but they together failed to carry the home-rule bill. Thereux on the London Times printed its series of incriminatory articles, which caused the famous trial of 128 days, in which Parnell was cleared. He was now immensely popular and powerful, but the presentation of the freedom of the city of Edinburgh was quickly followed by disgrace on the publication of the application for divorce by Captain O'Shea, in which Parnell was made co-respondent. A decree was entered on Nov. 17, 1890. Some time after Parnell married Mrs. O'Shea. He, however, never regained political power, and died at Brighton, England, Oct. 6, 1891. See The Parnell Movement by T. P. O'Connor and England under Gladstone by Justin H. M'Carthy.